designing training programs
September 20, 2012 posted by

Customizing P90X

This is a reference post for those looking to use P90X for specific purposes like sports, weight loss, or muscle gain. I also explain how to mix it with other workout programs, like Insanity. There’s a fair bit of reading here but it’s pretty straightforward and very condensed—essentially just the basics of periodizational sports specific training—and well worth your time if you want to tailor P90X to suit individual goals beyond just getting in shape.

The principles here are valid for P90X2 as well. Of course the schedules would change but all the other info is vital for understanding specific uses of these programs. These are posted in order. If you’re confused skipping ahead, chances are your questions were answered earlier. If not, post a question on the Team Beachbody Message Boards and it will get to me.

Muscle Confusion

Customizing P90X

Insanity and X

Skiing and short cycles

Sore, Hungry, Tired: 3 Signs Your Program Is Working

Gaining Mass

Losing Weight

Endurance Sports Overview



Dancing (oddly enough I didn’t write this one)

Creating Hybrid Programs


  • Steve, I read your Losing Weight with P90X modification. Is this what you would recommend for a generally fit guy who still has body fat to lose? I ask because in a recent video chat you mentioned that Body Beast could be modified with a caloric deficit, but it wasn't ideal. Which of the Beachbody family of products do you think works best with a caloric deficit for reasonably fit individuals?

  • Cardio-based stuff works better with a caloric deficit because it's slightly less taxing on the musculature. This is even true with Insanity and it's crazy anaerobic sets, though something slightly less intense might be more ideal (though we have kick ass results in test groups of Insanity on a deficit). The key is to do a program where you're less at risk of becoming chronically overtrained, which is easier to do if you are undereating while creating a lot of muscle breakdown because it can trigger emergency hormonal cascades that can lead to central nervous system panic. No matter what you choose, the trick is to get plenty of nutrients in a minimum of calories as you want to enhance recovery as much as possible without over or under eating.

  • How does one become a test group member? Do you have to live in LA? 🙂

  • "it can trigger emergency hormonal cascades that can lead to central nervous system panic."that actually explains a lot. I'm hungry, horny and feeling itchy all over.J

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